Is Shaw Academy a Scam? Some Things You Should Know
If you are looking for an inexpensive alternative to taking a college course then Shaw Academy is one of your options. But should you trust this place? Or is Shaw Academy a scam in one way or another? Is it even worth your time and money?
I recently looked into this place because there has been a decent amount of hype surrounding it. In this review I’ll be going over how it all works, the cost, the things I like about it, what I don’t like, and ultimately whether or not I recommend it.
Shaw Academy Review
- Website: shawacademy.com
- Type: Online education platform
- Cost: Free to $49.95/mo
- Legit?: Yes
Shaw Academy is an online education platform that was founded in 2013 by James Egan & Adrian Murphy. They offer a range of courses in categories like photography, finance, nutrition, marketing, design, business, and others.
Most of the courses they offer are 4 weeks long but they do offer longer advanced courses. All of these courses come with a CPD certification (that will cost you), which stands for Continuing Professional Development. This is not equivalent to a college degree by any means but it does look decent on a resume.
What A Course At Shaw Academy Is Like
When you sign up for a course here its not like that course is ready and waiting for you. You will have to wait until the start date.
Each course ranges from 1 – 4 semesters in length. Each semester is 4 weeks so that means they range anywhere from 4-16 weeks.
The core components of each course consist of interactive lessons which are live-streamed, weekly assignments, and quizzes.
The live interactive lessons are the best when it comes to learning as far as I see it. Here you are able to interact with the teacher and get help on things you are confused with right there in the moment. The amount of these that each course will have just depends on the course. It will vary a lot. I have seen courses that are 16 weeks long that only have 8 live interactive lessons schedules and then I have seen 16 week courses with 32 live interactive lessons. So that just depends.
The live lessons will also be recorded for people that want to complete the course at their own pace.
The weekly assignments that you are given are also good. They keep you focused an moving along in the right direction. And the quizzes are somewhat of a “safeguard” to make sure you are learning. You will have a quiz at the end of each week that tests you on what you learned.
They offer a free 30 day trial where you can try one course out for free. You will get access to the live lessons and the weekly assignments which is nice. You will be able to do all the learning in the course but the downside is that you won’t be able to get credit for it. You won’t be able to get a certificate, or as they call it an “e-Diploma”.
In order to get access to everything you will need to be a Premium member which will cost you $49.95/mo
A lot of the courses offered here are free for the first semester. Then after that, as you advance, you have to become a Premium member.
In addition to these costs if you want to receive a hardcopy certificate you will have to pay an additional fee.
What I Like
The material that you will be taught at Shaw Academy is top notch. It will start out easy and rather basic but if you go through the advanced courses it can get intense. Overall, it is up-to-date and good quality.
They have a tech and educational support available around the clock. In addition you can also get help during the live lessons. Support is a must and this place does a pretty good job at providing it, which is something many other online classrooms like this do not.
Even if you are paying for the Premium membership that is a relatively low cost considering what you are getting.
The main downside as far as I see it is what you get from the courses. Sure the education is great and you can learn a lot. But the certificates provided might not be what you need to get where you are going.
This isn’t really a good alternative to college if that is what you are looking into it for. Instead the CDP Certificates that they award after completion are a good way to compliment a degree. But standing on their own they aren’t all that great on a resume honestly.
What Others Are Saying/ Shaw Academy Complaints
Overall the general opinion of Shaw Academy from others that have taken courses there is a good one. Most people have nothing but good things to say and were impressed by the courses. The material is good but there are complaints, many of which come from “unauthorized” payments being deducted by Shaw Academy and things like this.
Take the BBB for example (Better Business Bureau): There are good reviews there from people that loved the courses but negative reviews from people claiming that they were charged when they shouldn’t have been.
There are other complaints I found like this on other sites too. The customer service seems to be lacking when it comes to the billing department as well.
My overall opinion of Shaw Academy based on the complaints I’ve found is that they provide great education but are lacking in support and maybe are pushing their “premium” products a little too much on the salesy side.
Update: There seem to be a fair number of people complaining about being charged for the membership when they had already canceled or when they should have not been charged for one reason or another. You can read some of the comments below this post to see what I’m talking about.
Final Thoughts & What I Recommend
I like what I see with Shaw Academy. This place is definitely not a scam and is a good/inexpensive way to learn. There aren’t really any complaints that I have about it other than the e-Diploma’s that you get after completion of the courses.
This site is a place that I would recommend but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it to everyone. First off, if you are going to take courses here you should make sure that the payoff is what you are looking for. If you are trying to get a job that requires a college degree these just isn’t going to cut it.
I would also specifically recommend these courses to people that are self-motivated and have good problem solving skills. Internet courses like these don’t have the “hand holding” that your traditional in-class courses have so this can be important.
Also, I don’t know what courses you are specifically looking to take but if you are interested in learning social media marketing, digital marketing, etc… you might be interested in Wealthy Affiliate. Wealthy Affiliate provides training and tools for online business. I started out there knowing nothing and now I’m making a living working for myself online. I wrote a full review of Wealthy Affiliate here if you are interested in learning more about it.
But anyway… that is it for my review. I hope you enjoyed it, learned some things, and have a better idea of whether or not its the right choice for you. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns leave them below in the comment section and I’ll get back to you soon 🙂